Beautiful Dress

   There is a knock at the door and Qiqi hobbles out to answer. She looks through the cat’s eye and sees Kang Xin holding a plastic covered hanger. She opens the door, “Come on in, Xue is in my room. She is allergic to my cat.”

  He looks around the spacious living room. “You have a cat?”

  “Yeah. He is in the guest room so he doesn’t bother Xue.

  Give me the clothes I will take them to Xue, do you want some tea? I have an awesome Tibeten tea my Uncle Yun gave me.”

  Kang Xin has an amused expression, “Shen Qiqi how many Uncles do you have?”

  She puts her finger on her nose thinking, “Um. Quite a few. You know my mother’s family is really big.. then my dad has two brothers and then there are his brothers in arms..”

  Kang Xin laughs while looking at her pink bunny pajamas. He touches the soft floppy ear and flicks it, “As expected of a little bunny like you. Haha.. take this to Xue,  I will make the tea.”

 “ Okay, I left the tin on the counter.”

   Kang Xin walks to the kitchen and shakes his head when he sees the skull on the tin.

  Fat Cat heard the door and comes out of the guest bedroom thinking the annoying allergic woman had left. He lazily walks into the living room. He glances at the handsome man in the kitchen, Kang Xin? The little idiot is friends with my male idol! He prances over, his emerald green eyes are sparkling, Do you remember me? I was the celebrity chef at the banquet after the premiere of ‘The General’s Concubine Escaped’ You complimented my Lobster Bisque and had two servings! Oh my God you are so perfect! Flawless face..and that body..Fat Cat drools..if I were a woman.. Shit! If I was just human again..

  Kang Xin looks down at the fat orange furball strutting up to him. “You must be the cat my sister is allergic are so cute!” He picks him up and rubs his belly, and Fat Cat’s cheeks turn red. My male idol is so handsome up close. Wait! I am a man! He is stroking me..ahh so comfortable his hand is  really warm..

Fat Cat snaps out of his infatuated daze and tries to get down from Kang Xin’s arms. Kang Xin pets his head then lets him down onto the floor. He sees the empty cat dish and looks in the cupboard for cat food. He dumps a bunch into the bowl until it overflows then sees some treats and sprinkles them on top of the dry food. “Here you go.”

  Fat Cat looks at the full bowl covered with colorful treats then up at Kang Xin, pink bubbles are floating around him. You are the fucking best Kang Xin! He buries his head in the bowl and starts munching. Fat Cat stops for a drink of water and burps, when I return to my human form I promise I will fix you a magnificent feast! 

  Kang Xin is sitting on the couch with his long legs crossed leisurely drinking the tea when Qiqi comes out.

“How is the tea?”

  “Do you think your Uncle could get me some? I feel refreshed after drinking a cup. I had sober soup this morning but still felt a little hungover. I will pay whatever it costs. It tastes smooth with a hint of sweetness, with the skull on the tin haha I expected it to be bitter.”

  Qiqi picks up Fat Cat and he feels heavier, “Kang Xin, did you feed the cat?”

  “Yeah. I filled his bowl and gave him some of those rainbow colored treats.”

  Qiqi gives Fat Cat a pinch and whispers, “Little Piggy…Did you think I wouldn’t know?” She opens the sliding door so he can go outside.

  When the blast of cold hits Kang Xin he turns to look at Qiqi, “Don’t you have a litter box inside?”

  “No. I refuse to have a litter box in my apartment. The one outside is especially made, it wraps up the cat poop so all the maid needs to do is toss it away. I mean ewww ! Cat poop in the house? Gross!”

  She walks over to the box by the door she forgot about the delivery yesterday. “I can ask Uncle Yun but he isn’t in the country right now. He is in the Andes looking for a rare plant. He told me the name but I forget.

  Kang Xin come help me open this box.”

  He languidly strides over and takes out a keychain with a pen knife. He slides it through the tape. Qiqi lifts the tissue and her mouth drops open, “Oh My God! So beautiful!” She takes out a card, ‘I will pick you up at seven. Brother Si.’

   Kang Xin raises his eyebrow and looks at Qiqi, “Who is Brother Si?” The card has the initials K.I. in gold surrounded with small red lotus blossoms. The woman is a legend and her dresses sell for over three million… the number of dresses she makes a year is limited. He knows because when he appeared with in a movie with Fan Mi she wanted one to wear to the premiere and was denied.

   Qiqi takes out the incredibly beautiful pink silk embroidered cheongsam, “I have never seen a dress with this intricate embroidery!”

   Kang Xin repeats, “Who is brother Si?”

   “Oh..he is a friend of mine.”

   “A friend?”

  “Yes. He just returned from working in Africa and we are going to the Jade Auction tonight.”

    Qiqi’s face lights up and she excitedly picks up the dress,“I need to show Xue!”

   Kang Xin watches her back as she limps through the living room. Friend? You are too naive little bunny. I need to find information on this brother Si. 

   Kang Xin hears scratching on the glass sliding door. He looks over to see Fat Cat with a thin layer of snow on his head. He is frantically clawing the glass with his paw. Kang Xin opens the glass door and Fat Cat rushes into the living room shaking his body, Damn woman forgetting me! I almost froze my ass off out there!

  Xue is fixing her hair when Qiqi breathlessly enters the room, “Xue! Xue! Look!”

  Xue walks out of the bathroom and sees QiQi holding an amazing looking cheongsam. “Is that what was in the box by the front door?”

  “Yes. Isn’t it unbelievably beautiful!”

  Xue gently touches the exquisite embroidery. “My God Qiqi did your mom send you this dress? It is a K. I.” Only the elusive woman with the initials K. I. can embroider using the ancient forbidden stitch creating such lifelike designs.The butterflies look alive.

  “No. Brother Si for me to wear to the auction.’

  Kang Xue quickly retracts her hand, “Zheng Si?”  The cold and arrogant man must really like Qiqi to send her such an expensive and unique dress. The dress not only cost money but I heard K. I. has a strange quirk of meeting the client in person and requesting a favor.He had to personally meet with K. I. and ask her to create this dress. I doubt Qiqi knows how precious this dress is or what it means for Zheng Si  to go out of his way to purchase it especially for her.

   Kang Xue has a flash of jealousy thinking about the way Zheng Si cares for Qiqi. She fell in love with him in University but was forced to betray him by his brother Chu. I can never tell Zheng Si it was to save his life. He wouldn’t believe me anyway. 

  “Yes. Now I don’t have to go buy a dress.”

   She lays the dress on the bed and when she does a long velvet box falls out of the tissue. Qiqi stares at the velvet box then picks it up. She looks at Xue then opens it. Xue watches as Qiqi takes out a delicate necklace, a beautiful butterfly sparkling with diamonds, rubies and sapphires. Qiqi quickly puts it back in the box and snaps the top shut. “This is too much. I can accept the dress but not the necklace. He should give such a fairy like necklace to the woman he likes.”

   Kang Xue looks at Qiqi, obviously you are the girl he likes. The necklace must be very expensive but the dress is worth ten times as much in price and effort. “Qiqi I think he likes…” Before she continues Qiqi interrupts, “He told me once there was a girl in University he loved. I wonder what happened? As a little sister I should help him rekindle the romance. I will save the necklace for when he does.”

   Kang Xue’s heart skips a beat, “Zheng Si loved someone in University?”

  “Very much. I don’t know what happened though he doesn’t like to talk about his University days.” 

   “You think of yourself as Zheng Si’s little sister?”

   “ Of course. He and I formed a brother-sister bond long ago that can never be broken. I told you about that, did you forget?” 

   Xue has the urge to hug Qiqi, feeling guilty about her moment of jealousy, she wraps her arms around embracing Qiqi as her eyes get misty,“Qiqi..”

  Qiqi pats her head, “Clingy girl! Hahaha..I know you love me.”

  Xue lets Qiqi go and dabs her eyes with a tissue, “I am going to work. You need to call. I will wait to hear what the CEO says, but I am telling you he might not be satisfied with a phone call. He said for you to come in person.”

  “If he insists I will go in to the office since I have a dress to wear to the auction. I can stop on my way to the High School but I am going to see if it can be taken care of over the phone first. I really don’t want to go to the CEO’s office.” She vaguely remembers a harsh voice scolding her in the meeting room.

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